Thursday, December 2, 2010

Advent Begins

The other day I stumbled onto a blog that was devoted to cooking or crafts for each of the Catholic Saint feast days, and I was inspired and entertained. This woman is a GENIUS ! Anyone who could turn Catholicism into something kid friendly is an incredibly talented person ! I kept reading  and got inspired to do something similar in our household during the season of Advent. We are a mixed faith household and there is a constant effort to create and include things from our diverse paths  without insulting the others. We both believe that the season of Advent is important to observe. Christmas should not be a month - there is a season of patience and anticipation before and then a lingering glow for a short time before we start anew. Most every symbol used in modern Christmas celebrations are of Pagan origin , so there is ample opportunity for both of our faith traditions. ( Did you know that there is no evidence of Jesus being born in December, but strong evidence that the event occurred in September ? December 25 th was chosen in an attempt to eradicate the observance of Saturnalia ). History aside, instead of feeling like someone is trying to block out your own faith tradition, I see all of this historical evidence as proof that people throughout the ages in all cultures have celebrated this time of year as extraordinary. Let  the celebration begin !

The Advent Calender Quilt I made many years ago- a tradition in our home !

Our Advent Calender was hung on the first, and I sat down to plan something I am calling the December Madness, which begins on Saturday. Why Saturday ? It's Bob's Birthday and I did not have all my ducks in a row to begin any sooner. Watch for daily details !

In the mean time, people still need to be fed and nourished. I am absolutely loving the  practice of soaking grains before cooking ! I think I have been looking for different dishes to play with this technique, as well as others of a more nourishing quality. The other night I served this stir fry  which features healthy veggies, soaked grains , better for  you kind of fat and plenty of protein.

Beef  and pepper stir fry on baby spinach and Soaked Rice 

1 tablespoon  coconut oil
1 pound steak sliced thin
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon fresh ginger, grated
1 onion, sliced thin
1 yellow bell pepper, sliced in strips
1 small red bell pepper sliced in strips
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon oyster sauce
1/4 teaspoon corn starch
4 ounces raw baby spinach, about 8 cups loosely packed
Soaked brown rice, cooked

In a wok or large skillet, heat the oil. Stir-fry the beef, garlic and ginger over high heat just until the steak is partially browned and some pink remains, maybe 30 seconds to a minute. Add the onions and peppers; stir-fry until tender-crisp about 1 minute or so. Stir in the soy sauce and oyster sauce. Dissolve the cornstarch in  a small amount of water and pour over the meat and vegetables then stir in well. Cook very briefly just until the sauce thickens and coats everything. Serve over the raw spinach and brown rice. and peppers.

1 comment:

Baby Stepping said...

Your stirfry looks yummy!!